Studio 58: Students share high school stories in ‘I Know What I Saw’

Students had the unique opportunity to revisit their teens

The cast of Studio 58’s I Know What I Saw poses after performing for an intimate audience at Langara College on Oct. 11.
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Reported by Roxanne Egan-Elliott

Students of Studio 58 ‘know’ what they saw

The students of Langara’s Studio 58 performed their personal life experiences on stage during their latest production of I Know What I Saw.  

As part of the Risky Nights series, the show ran from Oct. 9 to 14.  The scene was set at a high school party where a fight which ends with tragic results left witnesses with differing accounts of what happened.  The play reflected how our biases can impact our perceptions.

For student actor Matisse Quaglia, the project provided an opportunity to put his ideas on stage. Quaglia drew from his own experiences in high school to contribute to the story.

“It’s really empowering because it lets me know that my story is valuable and that people want to hear about parts of what has brought me here today,” Quaglia said.

“It’s definitely given me the tools to say, ‘yeah, I can create my own show,’ I know roughly how to set lighting, sound, props, and then acting and bringing a good team together.”

Rachel Aberle returns to Langara

Rachel Aberle, Studio 58 graduate from 2009, returned to Langara to direct the show providing guidance to students through their collective creative process. Aberle was one of just three professionals, all Studio 58 graduates, who worked on the project with current students.

This is Aberle’s first time back at Langara working with current students in a professional role.

“It was really great to see them take ownership of the creation of the piece.  Whether it was the writing, or you know they also did all of the production elements, sourced costumes, hung the lights, designed lighting looks,” Aberle said. “The students I had really embraced it.”

Student performer Lauren Preissel, who is in her fourth term, said she learned how to use her own personal life experiences to figure out how to write her character.

“My character for sure is crafted from me,” she said, adding it was an amplified version of herself.

“It was pretty vulnerable for me get up there and do that.”

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